A Priority Mail Savings Opportunity

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Did you know you can still use Priority Mail Package service (PM), with free boxes, free insurance up to $100, and still save money over flat rate box rates for a lot of shipments? Keep reading.

USPS offers many sizes of free boxes for PM shipments that are not “Flat Rate” boxes.

The most popular size of a PM flat rate box is the “medium” which comes in two sizes: 11”x8.5”x5.5” and 11 7/8” x 13 5/8” x 3 3/8”. If you buy the label and postage on line the cost for shipping is $11.30. It allows you to ship anything that fits in either box anywhere in the US for that cost. A free box with a decent shipping cost. Not a bad deal.

What is not commonly known is that the USPS offers free PM boxes in addition to flat rate boxes. These are for general PM usage and are subject to standard weight and distance- based pricing. (In other words, they are not flat rate boxes). In many cases the price of a shipment is significantly less than if you used a flat rate box, especially for shipments in the 1-7 pound weight range and traveling to a nearby state

The additional free PM boxes come in these sizes:

11.5” x 13 1/8” x 2 3/8”
12”  x  12”  x  8”
7”  x  7”  x  6”
9.25” x 6.25” x  2”
15.25” x 12 3/8” x  3”
13 3/8” x 12 1/8” x 2.75”
14 3/8” x 7.5” x 5 1/8”
37 11/16” x 6 1/8” x 5 1/8”      (Medium Tube)
25” x  6”  x  5 7/8”                   (Small Tube)

This selection of box sizes makes the use of PM even more attractive and all these sizes can be ordered on the USPS website with free delivery to your door.

If you compare the $11.30 PM Medium Flat Rate charge against the standard PM charges, you’ll find that a standard PM shipment is less expensive for a number of weights and zones – sometimes a lot less. These savings range from $4.79 to $6.75 for a one pound shipment depending on the shipping distance and can be nearly a dollar less for a short-distance, 10 pound shipment.

To sum up, before you automatically reach for a flat rate box, weigh your shipment in one of the other PM boxes to see if there are savings available! Same service, free box, lower price. What a deal for you and your customer!

By the way, using these free boxes for non-Priority Mail shipments is a big no-no.”

5 thoughts on “A Priority Mail Savings Opportunity

  1. this is great information. One suggestion have a pin it button. I wanted to share you on my interest I have a board folks follow about, the art of doing business. I would also like to see about re-blogging this, though I am a new blogger and not sure how to do this. I am always looking to share good helpful advice.

  2. I discovered this today when I received a package in the 9.25” x 6.25” x 2” box size. I’d never seen it before, and it’s a much more useful size than the small flat-rate box. But how to get my hands on these? My post office certainly doesn’t have them. I guess you can order them from the USPS?

    • Yes you can order them online at usps.com. Click on “Shop” and then “Shipping Supplies” and you can order a wide array of free boxes that will be delivered to your door. Be sure to look and see if they are “Flat Rate” or not. The non-flat rate shipments that aren’t too heavy can be sent to lower zones for quite a bit less than the “Flat Rate” versions. You can check the rates using the “Calculate a Rate” option on the site.

      Good luck. Dwight

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